Since I last wrote a newsletter (last Tuesday), much has changed. Within the span of a week, I hosted Shakti’s largest event of the year – the Summer Solstice Celebration, my father-in-law passed away, the United States Supreme Court reversed Roe v. Wade, and I attended the first Rainbow Festival in Johnson City. Clearly a week of ups and downs without much time to gather my thoughts let alone process all of my emotions.

What I write today are my first impressions. I suspect there will be many insights and revelations as I personally and we collectively digest the news and observe the fallout of the major changes impacting our lives.

It should be no surprise to those who know me that I do not agree with the reversal of Roe v. Wade. I believe everyone, regardless of their gender, has a right to make decisions about their own body.

Quite a few people reached out to me on Friday after the Supreme Court’s decision was announced. I heard rage, heartsickness, fear, and despair. To everyone who reached out as well as to the people who did not: I hear you, I feel you, and I mourn with you. Please know Shakti in the Mountains will continue to provide a safe space for people to gather and to connect as we seek solace, affirmation, encouragement, and hope.

Below are the guiding principles I am using to navigate uncertainty, sadness, and fear. As always, take what you find helpful and leave the rest behind. If you would like, please share what is working for you.

Sending much love,

Kim Bushore-Maki

Kim’s Guiding Principles for Navigating Tough Times

  • Wait before responding (especially when very angry): I wish I could say I am able to respond with integrity when I am feeling very emotional, but I usually don’t. I need to give myself space to rant and to rave as well as to give myself space to calm down and to ground. In Buddhism, the practice of not being caught up in what is happening to us is referred to as equanimity. Equanimity protects us from the Eight Worldly Winds (praise and blame, success and failure, pleasure and pain, fame and disrepute) which can blow us off course. If we can maintain our center and do not get blown off course, then we can make decisions and act with integrity. (Source)
  • Develop habits which reflect your long-term goals: It is so easy to fall off the wagon. I have all these good intentions and then Boom! Stuff happens and my best laid plans go out the window. I get it: sometimes things happen beyond our control and we have to step back and punt. If, however, you discover that your best laid plans keep getting pushed to the side, then it is time to stop and to reevaluate. If you feel that you are in constant crisis mode, then there is a deeper root cause which needs to be addressed. Habits help you reach your long-term goals and ideally reflect your values. For example, if I want to be able to respond with equanimity, then developing a daily meditation practice is a great habit to create.
  • Be aware of projection – know what is yours: When people are upset, they have a tendency to project their fear and their worries onto other people. Sometimes projection is done intentionally; however, most of the time it is unconscious. Projection is a habit, typically developed early in life, as a way to get one’s needs met. When someone is projecting, their goal is to make you feel responsible for the problem, and therefore, want to fix it. People also use projection as a way to avoid looking at a hard truth or to avoid being held accountable for their own choices. Get clear on what you are responsible for and what is motivating you to act. If you notice guilt or fear is motivating you, then you may want to pause and ask: Is this something I want to do or am I feeling pressured or coerced into acting? 
  • Lead with love: In tough times, there is a lot of fear running rampant. It is so easy to get caught up in the fear whirlwind. People tend to make rash decisions when they are feeling fearful. Slowing down, taking deep breaths, and connecting with your wise self is an invitation to align with love instead of fear. Love also leads to sustainable solutions. I am not aware of any decisions made in fear which ultimately reflect what we want and where we want to go. Give yourself the time and the space to connect with love.

Kim Bushore-Maki is a soul-driven entrepreneur who understands the undeniable urge to create a business and a life filled with meaning and purpose. Her vision of opening a center where women could heal and grow led her to open Shakti in the Mountains in Johnson City, Tennessee: a place where the creative, feminine energy is nurtured and valued.

Since 2010, Kim continues to build and to support a healthy, vibrant community and now guides retreats, teaches yoga, and provides one-on-one services for women who want an immersion experience into the life-affirming, Shakti energy.

Kim’s training as a therapist and yoga teacher allows her to safely and compassionately guide women on a heart-centered journey to Self, where women re-connect with their beautiful, authentic spirit.

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